Today's official announcement that Sky's Pick TV, Challenge and News channels would be launching on Freesat has been met with great jubilation across internet forums and social media.
While viewers will welcome the greater choice, it may come at a price for
Freesat: Sky has now gained a foothold to promote its channels and services to Freesat viewers.
Both Pick TV and Challenge feature promotions and trailers for Sky's
subscription channels and services several times an hour. Sky News also heavily
cross-promotes other offerings from Sky.
In contrast to Freeview viewers, Sky is all too
aware that many ex-Sky subscribers may have switched to Freesat, keeping their old Sky dish and may consider these viewers as being
easier to persuade back. Other Freesat viewers already have the required dish
for Sky, so any switch would be made easier for them, too.
However, with Sky leading the way, it may persuade other broadcasters, such as UKTV - owners of the Yesterday, Really and Dave TV channels to
join the growing Freesat platform in 2013. The addition of more channels - and more HD channels in 2013 may keep viewers happy enough to stay with Freesat or even encourage Freeview viewers to make the switch to offset any effect from Sky's promotions....
Sky's three Freeview channels join Freesat (a516digital.com, 01/12/2012)
Pick TV, Challenge and Sky News join Freesat on Monday, 3rd December 2012